The Witches play a significant role in Macbeth, appearing in the very first scene and influencing much of the action that follows.
While their precise nature is left somewhat ambiguous – are they supernatural beings, or merely women with knowledge of herbal lore and a talent for mischief? – their impact on the titular character is undeniable.
Macbeth is initially wary of the Witches, but after they correctly predict that he will be made thane of Cawdor, he begins to believe in their power. This belief leads him down a dark path, as he starts to believe that they can help him achieve his ultimate goal: becoming king.
The Witches feed into Macbeth’s ambition and greed, encouraging him to take increasingly drastic measures to achieve his goals. They also foreshadow the eventual downfall of Macbeth, predicting that he will be defeated by a man not born of woman.
While the Witches may not be the root cause of all of Macbeth’s problems, they are certainly a significant factor in his eventual undoing.
In Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Macbeth was initially a kind individual who was very loyal to King Duncan. Unfortunately, Macbeth was taken advantage of by a few individuals. The events in this tragedy would not have occurred without the Three Witches as well as Lady Macbeth, who drove him to do terrible things slowly.
The Three Witches were able to see into the future and they used this knowledge to trick Macbeth. Lady Macbeth on the other hand, was able to convince Macbeth that he needed to do whatever it took in order to be king, even if that meant killing Duncan.
The Three Witches had a huge impact on Macbeth’s actions throughout the play. In the beginning of the play, the witches make several predictions which all come true by the end. This gives Macbeth false hope that he will become king one day. The witches also say things that are cryptic and open to interpretation. For example, when they say “fair is foul and foul is fair” (I.i.10), this could be interpreted to mean that good things will lead to bad things happening.
Lady Macbeth is another person who had a huge impact on Macbeth’s actions. Lady Macbeth is very ambitious and she wants her husband to be king no matter what. She is the one who convinces him to kill Duncan so that he can take over the throne. Lady Macbeth is also very manipulative. She uses her feminine wiles to convince Macbeth to do things that he wouldn’t normally do.
The Three Witches and Lady Macbeth were both extremely influential in driving Macbeth to commit tragic acts. Without their influence, Macbeth would have never killed Duncan and the events of the play would have been very different.
The witches have a significant role in Macbeth’s downfall. In fact, the witches begin the tragedy by informing Macbeth about his future. Macbeth meets with the bearded ladies at the start of the story and they say, “All hail to you, Thane of Glamis…Thane of Cawdor.” (Act 1 Scene 3) The women were implying that after being named Thane of Glamis, Macbeth would be promoted to Thane of Cawdor.
This prophecy comes true immediately which makes Macbeth think that the next part, him becoming king, will come true as well. The witches not only make predictions but also give Macbeth visions. After hearing about Banquo’s descendants taking the throne, Macbeth sees a floating dagger with the handle pointing towards his hand.
Witches were believed to have the power of causing such apparitions. This sighting convinces Macbeth to kill Duncan and take the throne for himself. If it weren’t for the witches, Macbeth would never have known about his future or had any inclination to kill Duncan and become King.
Those words would soon be King after thane of Cawdor Macbeth. Those words planted a seed of evil in Macbeth’s mind. He then considered who might stand in his path to becoming king. And that is when the notion of murdering Duncan first came to mind for him. If it were not for the witches’ prediction, Macbeth would not have recognized that he would become thane of Cawdor or King because to them he may do anything. The witches instilled the notion in his head that he could become king, and he took it from there.
The Three Witches are significant throughout the play as they provide Macbeth with a false sense of confidence which leads him to his inevitable downfall. In Shakespeare’s day, people believed that witches had the power to control people’s fate. The audience would have been expecting the Witches to cause trouble from the start.
When the Witches first appear, they cast a spell and say “Fair is foul and foul is fair”. This means that what appears to be good may actually be bad, and vice versa. This could be interpreted as a warning to Macbeth, as he is about to embark on a path which will lead him to his downfall.
The Witches also say “All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, thane of Glamis!” and “All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, thane of Cawdor!” They greet Macbeth with these titles even though he has not yet been given them. This makes the audience question whether the Witches have the power to see into the future or if they are just tricking Macbeth.
Lady Macbeth convinced him to carry out his terrible plan by manipulating him. Macbeth began to have second thoughts about committing the crime. He stated, ” ‘Tis well done if it be done swiftly,’ which suggests that he would commit the murder if there were no repercussions,” referring to how quickly it should be completed (Act 1 Scene 7). This indicated that he was concerned about what could happen after he carried out the assassination of King Duncan.
Banquo was also worried about what could happen if Macbeth went through with the murder. Banquo said, “I think not of them” (Act 1 Scene 3) meaning that he does not want to get mixed up in Macbeth’s plan to kill King Duncan. Banquo is trying to distance himself from Macbeth because he knows that if anything goes wrong he could be held just as culpable.
The witches were able to convince Macbeth that he would become the next king even though they never explicitly said it. They did this by using vague prophecy and wordplay. The first witch says, “All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, thane of Glamis,” (Act 1 Scene 3) which could be interpreted to mean that Macbeth is already the thane of Glamis. The second witch says, “All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, thane of Cawdor,” (Act 1 Scene 3) which could be interpreted to mean that Macbeth will become the thane of Cawdor. The third witch says, “All hail, Macbeth! that shalt be king hereafter,” (Act 1 Scene 3) which could be interpreted to mean that Macbeth will become king in the future.
The witches were also able to plant the seed of doubt in Macbeth’s mind about Banquo. The first witch says, “Banquo and Macbeth, all hail!” (Act 1 Scene 3) which could be interpreted to mean that Banquo is just as important as Macbeth. The second witch says, “Lesser than Macbeth, and greater,” (Act 1 Scene 3) which could be interpreted to mean that Banquo is not as great as Macbeth but he is still greater than him. The third witch says, “Not so happy, yet much happier,” (Act 1 Scene 3) which could be interpreted to mean that Banquo will not be as happy as Macbeth but he will still be happier than him.